Character of Place I.
Sheary Clough Suiter
House on Helluva Street Call it right. Peter’s Creek’s a river where big rocks roll and root balls gouge banks over-hung hollow. Log jams buck and bend the bull of the current like bones choking a throat. Run off melt, glacier break, summer soaker, some floods will take your home.
You want a clean run that lets you sleep. After weeks of work in knee high rapids running gray in rock flower, with chainsaw and chest waders, you clear the channel. You stagger with rock after rock in your arms deflecting current with berms that won’t let the stream eat your acres. Woman and dog gone, you clean house. You drop the rock in your arms. You list your chores: get out of bed, clean equipment, dry tents and tarps, organize stuff for taxes, clean fridge, organize cupboards, make the bed. In drawers spoons full of spoons are satisfied, They call you a shadow name on location where you shoot. Racing the rain, light in the lens, spray in the boat, the story tells of elders and seals, reflections of place and ice, inch worm on a branch, a clip of water poured from a boot. Who we are and the earth around us speak in seasons. Recycled salmon come home to rapids in Peter’s Creek the river. The heart breaks and pumps again. Here’s your mother’s stew to heat and keep you going. I only came to see your work and the river run.
I read how each restaurant in one portside town showcases “Jaws” memorabilia and here a Pulaski at our local museum a binder of articles about “Dante’s Peak” tragedy fictionalized replayed nostalgic for the days of the Big Burn is what we are best known for and is what they will take home II. bodies may be burned the lost mourned properly by now buildings are replaced— not rebuilt but better in post-earthquake Edo namazu-e the catfish God is depicted with golden coins—a symbol of wealth redistributed a blessing this time of change earthquakes seem to come with a new season but history is a feeling that never shakes… even with dust-free new homes and clean streets the memory looms this calm—this spring—this is earthquake weather
A Journal for the North Pacific Rim